Spring fever is hotter than ever. Birds are chirping, businesses are reopening and my social media feeds are a constant stream of vaccination pics and captions expressing joy, relief and gratitude. We are experiencing a great reawakening. Stretching and yawning from the slumber of this past year, stumbling slowly and stepping lightly towards that fuzzy memory of how we used to live. A time when days were defined by commutes, timeclocks, school bells, appointments, commitments, and celebrations that took place in public!
Unlike Sleeping Beauty, our eyes have been wide open during our time at home, compelling us to experience the highs and lows of life in our confined space (recognizing this good fortune) while attempting to keep track of the world outside through screens, media and abbreviated contact with the people and businesses who have carried us through with their frontline work. We have been moved and motivated by social unrest, politics, the power of nature and thankfully also, the power of laughter and entertainment.
Even as we have grown our minds and stretched our understanding and compassion, steeping in our home environment has also worked our every last nerve and tried our patience. We have, scrutinized our belongings, decor, closets, partners and overall life choices. We have a better idea of what we truly value and use each day, and judging from the lines at Goodwill and the popularity of home organization books and shows, the scourge of 2020 may well be followed by the purge 0f 2021. But what (and who) will make the cut? What are we using and reaching for everyday that has earned its place in our lives many times over? I checked in with some friends and colleagues to find out what items (beyond health, family, shelter etc.) they would be lost without.
My own list of must haves is pretty short. I have two ratty-tat cashmere robes, one from Costco and another from Goodwill in constant rotation as blankets and housecoats for this cold old lady. Quality time with my beloved Tweezerman tweezers and Simply Human magnifying mirror has become a bit of a hobby, and my iPhone and iPad may as well be surgically attached to my body. Early in lockdown I resubscribed to the New York Times and after some horrifying Zoom appearances I did curbside pick up at Best Buy for a Sunpak Light Ring kit and I have learned to not hate Sleep Stories on the Calm app.
Our list of favorite things stretches from coffee to kittens and is dominated by recommendations that help us wake up, look good, feel good, and sleep well.
The call of nature is a high value pick, in every way. Anna Riley didn’t plan to fall in love with the Toto Washlet, but a pandemic powder room renovation has turned her into a Toto Evangelist. Meanwhile, Janine Dyer has three chickens, one dog, two cats, a bunny, three fish, 90000 snails, two teenagers, one golden boy (11 year old) and a husband. The pets top her list because she only feeds them twice a day, they don’t leave dishes in every room of the house and she doesn’t have to do their laundry. Joy Roush fills her home with flowers and Kim Brooks cant help but level up loungewear with her sleek jumpsuits. Sarah Oeltjen recommends her weighted blanket, but she doesn’t sleep with it. Instead she uses it for movie watching, couch snuggling and hiding from the realities of our world. Caroline Williams wakes up to the perfect blend of automatic and manual controls on her Breville coffee system while Susan Ishii Yin is deeply attached to her favorite Vitamin C Serum. Ally Svenson researched the ideal shoes for her daily walkabout and Shelby Elmore found a blissful escape.
Whether you want to sleep in or runaway these picks will keep you feeling at home.